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Trump signs relief bill into law, includes $600 stimulus checks

Trump introduced the signing in a press release that spoke of his frustrations with the invoice for together with solely $600 checks, as a substitute of bigger ones Republicans rejected.

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — President Donald Trump signed a $900 billion pandemic aid bundle Sunday, ending days of drama over his refusal to just accept the bipartisan deal that can ship long-sought money to companies and people and avert a federal authorities shutdown.

The large invoice consists of $1.four trillion to fund authorities businesses via September and accommodates different end-of-session priorities reminiscent of a rise in meals stamp advantages.

The signing, at his non-public membership in Florida, got here amid escalating criticism over his eleventh-hour calls for for bigger, $2,000 aid checks and scaled-back spending regardless that the invoice had already handed the Home and Senate by huge margins. The invoice was handed with what lawmakers had thought was Trump’s blessing, and after moths of negotiations together with his administration.

His foot-dragging resulted in a lapse in unemployment advantages for thousands and thousands struggling to make ends meet and threatened a authorities shutdown within the midst of a pandemic.. However signing the invoice into regulation prevents one other disaster of Trump’s personal creation and ends a standoff together with his personal get together in the course of the remaining days of his administration.

It was unclear what, if something, Trump completed together with his delay, past angering all sides and empowering Democrats to proceed their push for greater aid checks, which his personal get together opposes.

In his assertion, Trump repeated his frustrations with the COVID-19 aid invoice for offering solely $600 checks to most People as a substitute of the $2,000 that his fellow Republicans already rejected. He additionally complained about what he thought-about pointless spending by the federal government at massive.

“I’ll signal the Omnibus and Covid bundle with a powerful message that makes clear to Congress that wasteful gadgets must be eliminated,” Trump mentioned within the assertion.

Whereas the president insisted he would ship Congress “a redlined model” with gadgets to be eliminated below the rescission course of, these are merely recommendations to Congress. The invoice, as signed, wouldn’t essentially be modified.

Democrats, who’ve the bulk within the Home, instantly vowed to forestall any cuts. Democrats “will reject any rescissions” submitted by the president, mentioned Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey, D-N.Y. , in a press release.

Lawmakers now have respiratory room to proceed debating whether or not the aid checks must be as massive because the president has demanded. The Democratic-led Home helps the bigger checks and is ready to vote on the problem Monday, however it’s anticipated to be ignored by the Republican-held Senate the place spending faces opposition. For now, the administration can solely start work sending out the $600 funds.

Republicans and Democrats swiftly welcomed Trump’s determination to signal the invoice into regulation.

“The compromise invoice isn’t good, however it’ll do an unlimited quantity of excellent for struggling Kentuckians and People throughout the nation who need assistance now,” mentioned Senate Majority Chief Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. “I thank the President for signing this aid into regulation.”

Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., referred to as the signing “welcome information for the fourteen million People who simply misplaced the lifeline of unemployment advantages on Christmas weekend, and for the thousands and thousands extra struggling to remain afloat throughout this historic pandemic and financial disaster.”

However others slammed Trump’s delay in turning the invoice into regulation. In a tweet, Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., accused Trump of getting “performed Russian roulette with American lives. A well-known and comfy place for him.”

Senate Democratic chief Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., mentioned he would provide Trump’s proposal for $2,000 checks for a vote in Senate — placing Republicans on the spot.

“The Home will go a invoice to offer People $2,000 checks. Then I’ll transfer to go it within the Senate,” Schumer tweeted. “No Democrats will object. Will Senate Republicans?”

Democrats are promising extra support to come back as soon as President-elect Joe Biden takes workplace, however Republicans are signaling a wait-and-see strategy.

Congress will push forward Monday, with the Home anticipated to vote to override Trump’s veto of an annual must-pass Protection invoice, confronting the president on one other massive concern within the remaining days of the session. The Senate is anticipated to comply with on Tuesday.

Within the face of rising financial hardship, spreading illness and a looming shutdown, lawmakers spent Sunday urging Trump to signal the laws instantly, then have Congress comply with up with extra support. Except for unemployment advantages and aid funds to households, cash for vaccine distribution, companies and extra was on the road. Protections in opposition to evictions additionally hung within the stability.

“What the president is doing proper now could be unbelievably merciless,” mentioned Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. “So many individuals are hurting. … It’s actually insane and this president has bought to lastly … do the fitting factor for the American individuals and cease worrying about his ego.”

Republican Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania mentioned he understood that Trump “needs to be remembered for advocating for large checks, however the hazard is he’ll be remembered for chaos and distress and erratic conduct if he permits this to run out.”

Toomey added: “So I feel the perfect factor to do, as I mentioned, signal this after which make the case for subsequent laws.”

The identical level was echoed by Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican who’s criticized Trump’s pandemic response and his efforts to undo the election outcomes. “I simply gave up guessing what he may do subsequent,” he mentioned.

Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois mentioned an excessive amount of is at stake for Trump to “play this previous switcheroo recreation.”

“I don’t get the purpose,” he mentioned. “I don’t perceive what’s being completed, why, until it’s simply to create chaos and present energy and be upset since you misplaced the election.”

Washington had been reeling since Trump turned on the deal. Fingers pointed at administration officers, together with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, as lawmakers tried to grasp whether or not they have been misled about Trump’s place.

“Now to be put in a lurch, after the president’s personal particular person negotiated one thing that the president doesn’t need, it’s simply — it’s stunning,” Kinzinger mentioned.

Kinzinger spoke on CNN’s “State of the Union,” and Hogan and Sanders on ABC’s “This Week.”

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